Saturday, 28 April 2012

3KCBWDAY6 - Skillful knits

Day Six: Improving Your Skillset

Hmmm... wasn't quite sure where to go with this topic, as I feel I have covered the "things I'd like to learn/could improve on" subject in previous years here and here. Admittedly though, there's always something new you can learn, improve upon or a new approach to something (such as a different cast-on method) to try.


However, I am happy to say that I have learned many aspects of the knitting skillset over the years and I truly appreciate why it is called a "craft" - both from a hand knitting and machine knitting perspective. I'm glad that it's something I have persevered with, as it is so much more than just a hobby to me, at certain points it has in fact been my livelihood as a self-employed designer.

Crafting 365 Day 293

Knitting definitely has its benefits (certainly for me at least) and I have found the meditative quality of the rhythm and repetitive motions comforting on many an occasion - when things seem a little overwhelming, I find it really does help to sort out my emotions and thoughts, as well as being an activity that I like to do to help unwind (pun intended) before bedtime.

I think if there's one thing I'd like to do more of, it's to write more of my own patterns. I have written several patterns - for machine and hand knits - so "improving" is one thing, but it's more about having the courage to just do them sometimes, and put them out into the world. I haven't actually published very many of them but I would like to build on my pattern library in the coming years.

Crafting 365 Day 291

As someone who has read and knitted from rather a lot of patterns in one capacity or another over the years (some of them better than others!!!), I like to think that I have a pretty good idea of how to create a clear, easy-to-follow pattern and accompanying set of instructions.


Truly Myrtle said...

Sounds exciting. Love the shots of your knitting machine! I've never tried one, it must be fun - so speedy!

Pirate said...

I agree with everything you've written! Knitting/crocheting/spinning are often my meditation, and I think that's why I haven't written up more patterns - it's a little stressful to get every bit of instruction just right, instead of just relaxing with a simple sock on the sofa...

Cat McLaughlin said...

@ Truly Myrtle, thanks - I do enjoy the best of both worlds. Machine knitting is *usually* faster haha! I have 3 different ones: a chunky one, one for patterning and the pictured one which is best for good old stocking stitch. If you get the chance, and manage get the hang of it, machine knitting can be pretty cool!

@ Pirate - I'm glad I'm not alone on that one! It's true that it requires a lot of time & effort to get a pattern just right, which is probably why doing a nice bit of straightforward knitting is often so much more appealing ;)

Pumpkin said...

Looks like you have been having fun with Instagram, isn't it such a great tool for taking photos? I'm also so jealous that you managed to get your hands on a knitting machine, I've always been really interested in one of those old-school ones with punch cards.

polkaknits said...

Knitting is my way of relaxing. Now I can't live without it!
Great photos!

Cat McLaughlin said...

@ Pumpkin - yes! I do enjoy playing around with Instagram. If you're looking to source a knitting machine yourself, I heartily recommend checking out any charity/thrift/second-hand shops you can, that's how I got two of mine (one was a gift from a connection!), and for a very reasonable price. Otherwise check ebay - it's great for those hard-to-find parts and long-lost instruction manuals too!